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Give the Forest a Hand

World Forest Day Celebrations

To mark World Forest Day, the Group runs a social and environmental responsibility program called "Give the Forest a Hand".

The main aim of this project is to raise awareness of the need to protect and improve Portugal's woodlands. This social and environmental responsibility scheme aims primarily to conserve the environment by raising awareness amongst Portuguese children and young people, and has reached out to an increasingly wide audience.

Launched in the International Year of Forests, in 2011, the scheme has reached out to an increasingly wide audience, with a growing focus on educating people for sustainability. We have organised educational activities for thousands of primary school children and their teachers, dealing with forestry protection issues and the sustainable paper cycle.

Run in partnership with municipal authorities, "Give the Forest a Hand" has been well received by local communities up and down the country. The scheme has also included giving away thousands of saplings and ornamental plants from the Group's nurseries. This project has offered the Group an excellent opportunity to reaffirm its public commitment to generating wealth and well-being in the regions around its industrial sites and forestry operations, and has made a significant contribution to creating a culture of improving and protecting woodlands.

The success and relevance of this campaign have been highlighted by the Portuguese Corporate Communication Association (APCE), which chose it as the Best Social Responsibility Media Campaign at the 2013 and 2014 APCE Awards.

Our 2015 campaign received a strong response from local communities. Close to 1500 primary and pre-school children took part in learning games led by educational officers specialised in environmental education programmes, and we gave away 5500 plants from our nurseries.

Praise from the public

Fernanda Saraiva, a primary school teacher from Azambuja, told us: “These activities are very important for the kids to see at first had what they learn about in the classroom”. Santiago, aged five, enthused about the Forest Game: “The lady told us which tree was used to make sheets of paper, that it was the eucalyptus”.